We’re now three years into the lifespan of this blog, and in that time it has seen many changes. I’ve gone from breathlessly discussing what is happening on the Hills to seeing an ad for it the other day and thinking, “Wait… there’s another season? I thought it was over a year ago!”
The world changes so much in three years.
But that’s not what this post is about – I thought I’d check in to see what you’d like to see more/less of on the blog and to solicit feedback. I aim to please!
More/less publishing news?
More/less Nathan’s writing life?
More/less Nathan speaking in the third person?
The last time I checked in people asked for Forums, so this isn’t an idle exercise. I am definitely curious and very much appreciate your thoughts.
And I can’t thank you enough for reading and commenting – some of you have been around since the beginning and it really means a lot! Thank you thank you thank you.
Cheyanne Young says
I'd love to see more queries that you like enough to request and also more of Nathan talking in the third person. 🙂
Karla Nellenbach says
more query tips would be great…
definitely more Nathan talking about Nathan in third person and spider-howler-monkeys please 🙂
I enjoy reading about your processes in writing and in agenting. If monkeys happen to sneak in frequently, that's all right too. 😉
Natalie Whipple says
I need more cowbell.
Sorry, couldn't help myself.
More/less queries? query tips from you are always welcome and awesome.
More/less writing? Writing MOAR!
More/less publishing news? Publishing news you can get loads of places I say save your posts and time.
More/less Nathan's writing life? Nathan's writing life is interesting. Go for more.
More/less Nathan speaking in the third person? Who doesn't love third person?
More/still-more/no-really-I-mean-way-more monkeys? Monkeys are a gimmick and to market you need a shiny spiffy gimmick right?:P
Queries, I third that! Those posts are incredibly helpful!
Matt Ryan says
Hi Nathan –
Thanks for the opportunity to weigh in. Like the others, I am definitely interested in more query best practices and advice on other tools like synopses.
I'd love to see a discussion about picking and then developing a premise for a book you're thinking about writing. What would an agent or an editor say to a writer at the outset?
D. G. Hudson says
My preference is for more writing information, techniques and tips. That would include query, synopsis, and all parts writing.
Keep the same amount of publishing news to keep us up to date on what's important to know, and the same goes for your writing life. It gives us a peek into the your writing process and your dealings with the industry.
As for the monkeys, those pesky little critters, I would cage them in the forums.
I think the forums are great even if I don't visit there often. I like the option. But I'm stingy with my writing time.
Thanks Nathan for asking what we think!
Ditto to Cheyanne's comments. But she forgot the monkeys. Definitely more of them.
I also say more queries. Please.
More queries, more writing.
And more cats photo, seriously. Doesn't necessarily have to have bacon taped on them, but cats photo once in a while is nice.
Wordy Birdie says
I'd love to see the return of a search bar, so we can do a post search using keywords. I've really missed that with the new layout, and it can be a little frustrating and time-expensive to have to search through many posts to find exactly what I'm looking for.
But apart from that, love it. Keep on keeping on!
yes! your query posts are exceptionally helpful!
and so is pretty much everything you blog about.
i especially love that you share my love for all things Apple. (so i'd love to hear more on your thoughts re: the iPad, etc. and how these new technologies are going to revolutionize the literary world.)
thank you for all you do!
Nathan Bransford says
There's a search bar on the right side of the page, just under the books by my clients.
Chris Kubica says
I'm with Natalie. Definitely more cowbell.
More queries, more fun contests.
Derek Whisman says
I would love to see even more query talk. Perhaps more sample queries with your feedback, etc. I know from experience that the query process can often be the most frustrating parts of writing, so I think that would help tremendously.
Wordy Birdie says
Thanks Nathan, missed that!
I think you have pretty good instincts, Nathan. All your posts are genuine and informative.
Don't always get the space monkeys. But that's a personal lapse.
Susan Kaye Quinn says
More cats vs. monkeys, please.
Also, more of Nathan's writing life (third person or not), but I'm especially curious about your adventures through the road to publication, and now post-publication-holy-moly-I-have-to-write-a-sequel??? life.
That, and whatever pops into your head. 🙂
Hm. I'd say more on the writing life and the writing business – so queries, writing, and your writing life would all be great.
I usually tend to just skim the publishing news though, so maybe stick to the BIG NEWS, or stuff that's really going to affect you/us.
Yes to all of the above!
But seriously… I love reading about news in the publishing world and how different people are reacting to everything…I'm still lost in the world of querying and trying to get that right, so any tips and tricks there are always wonderful…and monkeys? Who doesn't love a monkey?
Melissa Sarno says
I read a lot of publishing blogs and I feel there's a lot less information about what happens after you get an offer from an agent. I think a lot of us hope to be in that position and it's not always clear to me what happens from the offer to the book deal.
Your posts are always informative and helpful. Thanks for doing what you do. 🙂
More queries and More Writing.
I can't speak for everyone, but I'm not too worried about anything at the moment except working on my writing and getting an agent. This seems to be a good focus on your blog, though, but I would like to see more writing. I loved that you had people submit sample pages. I can't get past that part!
But it's a great blog anyway!
I'm jumping on the query/writing train with the others. More monkeys only if they're speaking in third person.
I don't spend much time in the Forums, but I do think they are a great resource. Thanks for adding them.
Kristi Helvig says
Only if they're space monkeys – the other varieties really don't interest me.
I love everything you post about – well, except for eBooks, but I realize it's stuff I need to know. Basically, I'll just say you should keep up the awesome job you're already doing. I know, I'm so helpful! 🙂
More publishing info… you're much more connected with what's happening in the world of publishing than any of us. I'd like to know what the trends are, what genres are working, and what's not… if that is even possible 😛
In no other industry I can think of is there such a disconnect between suppliers (writers) and consumers (publishers, readers). Help bridge that gap.
Stephanie McGee says
Monkeys are always a nice addition to any post. Especially golden lion tamarinds. They make anything more palatable.
Queries would be good too. If you had examples or something. I'm a visual person so anytime I can see something put into action, it works better.
Not that there's anything wrong with your blog. I'm just saying that there's something wacky with my brain.
I agree with Natalie – I could really use more cowbell.
I like your query/writing/publishing stuff, but I like the stuff about YOU too. So… more of the same?
Kourtnie McKenzie says
I like the way your blog is now… XD
If I had to say I wanted more of something, it's your writing process. It's refreshing hearing the writer side and there's tons of agent resources here on your blog. I loved your post yesterday!
This Is The Knew Me says
I'm new to your blog and I'm still going through it. So far, I think it's great, but that's not why I'm commenting. One of the first things I thought when I started following you was, "Wow, this guy has a lot of author groupies!" So I was CERTAIN that when I read the comments, someone would have written, "More pictures of you, Cutiepatootie".
LMBO Now, 25 comments in… I'm SO disappointed…
T. Anne says
Just three years? I've been here that long. I guess I'm a charter member.
I guessed I'd like you teach me how to kick the @#%! out of my revisions so I could actually produce a novel you'd like to represent. How's that?
Emily White says
More query related posts would be greatly appreciated.
And monkeys. Lots more monkeys.
Actually, a bear vs. monkey death match would make this place perfect.
And Natalie Whipple–AHAHAHA! I am now on my way to YouTube to watch that again.
Hi Nathan, I'd really just like to hear more of everything 🙂 but I'd especially like to hear about the publishing industry and your thoughts on stuff like ebooks and self-publishing and whatnot.
I like reading about queries, but they're not as interesting as hearing about the day to day publishing stuff. 😛
I've been reading your blog for a few weeks now and this is my first comment. Just wanted to say thanks for all the invaluable information; I read up on your old blog posts and find all sorts of useful topics (and funny ones… I too used to be amazed by the pirate/hobo that is Justin-Bobby!)
I would love to see more about writing, queries, and the agent's perspective.
I love this blog the way it is/has been so far. It's not only informative, it's also the most entertaining agent blog there is.
If Miss Snark ever returns, I might have to reevaluate that statement, however.
This Is The Knew Me says
And I say author groupies in the nicest of ways… I don't mean to offend anyone…
I suggest: Queries and Writing!
But only if you speak in third person about your own writing, and include anecdotes about a monkey.
Just kidding, I really enjoyed your previous post about creating a Series Bible.
Emily Anderson says
Definitely include more cowbells.
I agree that you have good instincts. I like getting your take on issues that come up in the industry and that you listen to your commenters and respond. That's a biggie. Anything you provide that is informative and/or interactive is always useful and entertaining.
I too just scan the publishing news, but I like that you include a brief summary. If something interests me, I can click on the link.
Mary McDonald says
More query tips, and general how-to for getting published.
Not sure about the monkey thing. I must have missed that. Sounds…interesting. 😉
More clips of Coach Taylor giving speeches.
I like your posts about writing. We all need to focus on improving our writing (ie what turns you off as you are reading partials). I'm not so into the posts about queries…
I find reading all the e-news/iPad stuff painful, but that's because I work in book printing and my husband works in book publishing and we are already feeling the impact of the e-revolution in a not-so-great way. But that's just me.
Otherwise, keep doing what you're doing. I love the You Tell Me Posts because I can sound off about myself….which is fun every now and then..
Gypsyroz Poet says
I would like more of you in third person mostly because you say some pretty funny things; and definitely more query/synopsis and contests.
Deren Hansen says
There have been a number of votes for more Nathan speaking in the third person.
I, however, want more Nathan in the second person, omniscient.
You know you want to.
More contests, more queries, more Mexican vacations with pictures, more pesto, and more discussion of the writing life.
Christina B. says
I'd say more queries. Sometimes I wonder how much more someone can say on the topic, but after the recent Agent for a Day experiment I realized I'd like more on queries.
Maybe more on Nathan's writing life, too.
Also, a lot of the FAQ posts are pretty "old" (which is crazy to say b/c I feel like I just started reading the blog recently even though its been at least a couple years). And sometimes I wonder if Nathan were writing them today, would they read the same?
Those six questions were rhetorical hopefully. Your very much on target
as to all those individual aspects.
I use cyber anchors to help my electronic wanderings.
This blog and an old usenet group I have participated in since 1995. That's where I moved from songriting and poetry into short stories after 15 yrs of commercial writing.
What is needed and may be beyond the scope of what your willing to participate in is an idea I'll label
a: "Writers Consortium."
It has many of the functions you already have in forums plus a collaborative function demonstrated by the recent; "Agent For A Day."
Within that broad conceptual umbrella
of a W.Consortium is only the practical sub-divisions of a hierarchical nature that would be genre separations and mixed genres.
Its a idea you might be able to sell to your agency because it is nothing more than an old fashioned writers bar with coffee and snacks.
The details are sketchy.
I have always published my work openly (usenet)and gotten the type of instant feedback that the recent A.F.A.Day exercise provided.
Plus I save the links and have permanent proof of authorship if someone should swipe a word for word poem or song. I'm a realist; people walk away with story "skeletons" constantly. Its the old cliche that there are only so many stories, when you strip them of: the stage settings, and sexual identity assignments into base forms;
of beginnings, middles, and endings with characters the reader shall identify with, even if the surface label is a silly cliche of good or evil.
So in short your doing great unless you want to expand and risk moving beyond your desire to lend leadership as administrator to a broader endeavor. Maybe a pay raise could be in it if you sell it up the executive chain.
There's to much fast food in the entertainment business and not enough
well cooked balanced sit down meals to savor. Its hard to now by browsing the glut of advertising. I'm sure agents editors and publishers suffer from the same effect; indecision due to excess unrecognizable attempted categorization choices that probably wont closely match the final outcome.
Some people read for amusement and some people read to gain insight and knowledge to better there understanding of themselves and their fellow human beings.
But you, personally administer a high quality "Hub" from which to begin a cyber journey/event for business or pleasure.
If I had the skills I would start a writers consortium. The recent exercise helped me to go from editorial brutality level 9.5 to 9.9 on my own work. Behaving as if I was a continuity specialist concerned with not losing the reader for a single beat of the pacing rhythm.
No Nathan in third-person! NOOOOOOOOO!
Rick Daley says
Please keep posting regularly. I think your weekly format is excellent. It provides great variety.
I enjoy your contests and special projects, like Agent for a Day, maybe more of those?
P.S. Natalie's cowbell request made me laugh out loud. Good call 😉
more more more queries! and advice geared toward unpublished/unagented writers.